Nanaimo real estate prices slipped five per cent last month from a year ago, helping to drive brisk home sales.
Sales volumes were up 57 per cent in Nanaimo last month, according to the latest monthly report from the Vancouver Island Real Estate Association.
Sales volumes were up in all but one of the six zones representing individual markets in the VIREB region, which takes in everything north of the Malahat.
Average selling prices were down in all but two zones.
Prices fell one per cent on average, while unit sales volumes went up 29 per cent, averaged across all six zones.
The real estate industry's proprietary multiple listing service recorded 113 units sold in Nanaimo last month, up from 72 last September. Average selling prices fell to $342,000, from $361,000 during the same period.
The Nanaimo zone reflects what's happening throughout much of the region - a glut of homes on the market was followed by lower selling prices. "Long term, if we look back this time last year we had higher inventories," said Jennifer Merrilees, VIREB Nanaimo director. "And the number of units sold was lower last year."
Campbell River, where the massive 1.35-billion John Hart dam project is underway, prices rose seven per cent to $280,000, while sales volumes fell seven per cent to 28 units there. Prices in the Cowichan Valley fell nine per cent to $334,000, and unit sales rose 59 per cent.
Prices slipped the most in Cowichan Valley - 13 per cent - to $276,000.
The Port Alberni-Western zone saw the greatest market fluctuation, with prices up 22 per cent to $244,00, while zone sales volumes fell 24 per, to 19 units.
Despite the wide range of change in individual zones, selling prices slipped only one per cent, on average, to $340,000. Sales volumes rose 29 per cent, to 336 units, from 261.
"It bounces around a couple per cent here and there, but it's not doing anything crazy," Merrilees said. "It just goes to show how much more inventory we had - it was slow last year."
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